Date for your diary – 17th December: LibDemVoice Xmas drinks, followed by Steve Richards’ Rock ‘n Roll Politics

by Stephen Tall on October 28, 2012

Here’s a date for your diary… On 17th December, The Independent’s Steve Richards will bring his Rock ‘n Roll Politics to London for a Christmas special. Premiered at this year’s Edinburgh Festival, where it earned rave reviews, here’s how the show is billed:

Award winning BBC broadcaster and columnist, Steve Richards, takes you behind the scenes of British Politics and the media, the characters, the absurdities, the tragedies. Laugh and cry as you are taken on a whirlwind tour from Harold Wilson and David Bowie in the 1970s to David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband, via Paul McCartney and Tony Blair. A hit show at the 2012 Edinburgh Festival: Politics and the media all shook up…Rock N Roll Politics

I’m going and it would be great to meet up with LibDemVoice readers for a festive drink at 5pm before the show starts at 7pm. It’s all happening at Kings Place in London (near Kings Cross / St Pancras), so we’ll identify a suitable hostelry nearer the time and once we have an indication of interest. Otherwise I’ll happily prop up a bar on my own.

You can sign up for drinks on our Facebook page here, or via FlockTogether here.

To book tickets for Steve Richards’ Rock ‘n Roll Politics Christmas Special please click here.

Here’s a few reviews of Steve Richards’ Edinburgh show to whet your appetites…

… in a wide-ranging, relaxed hour, which kicks off with the question “is the coalition dead?”, Richards presents his answer to the death of satire, weaving together lobby gossip, acute analysis and autobiography with questions from the floor.Topics change daily depending on the news and interests of the audience. It’s like Question Time without the annoying tub-thumping.

The Independent

At a time when public outrage and displeasure with those from the world of journalism is growing, here is a seasoned political reporter telling it like it is. Others should follow where Richards is leading. When ever more young comics are trotting onto stage with nothing but hackneyed pseudo-banter (what is it you do?) or uninteresting self-analysis (like they’re are the only person ever to have a 2 year old, or to feel aged before their time), Richards is a breath of fresh air – someone with something to say and the charm to say it well. It’s non-threatening but neither is it edgeless.

Fringe Review

In his show, Richards – who spurned the opportunity to form a double act with the comedian Harry Enfield when the pair were at York University together – argues that comedy is widening disengagement from politics. “Saying ‘they’re all a bunch of bastards, ho ho ho, aren’t we funny?’ is dangerous, because it fuels an anti-politics mood.” He also believes the relationship between politics and comedy has changed fundamentally since the 1960s satire boom. “I don’t think the old dynamic works any more, because the satirists are wealthier and more powerful than the politicians they are taking the piss out of. You know, ‘John Prescott’s fat and can’t speak English very well,’ from somebody who earns £20,000 an appearance on Have I Got News For You? and edits Private Eye, and so is more powerful than Prescott ever was, that’s not very funny.”

The Guardian

* Stephen Tall is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, a Research Associate for the liberal think-tank CentreForum, and also writes at his own site, The Collected Stephen Tall.